Types of Cherries To Try

Cherries are a delectable fruit that are available in a wide range of variations. Every cherry variety has a distinct flavor and set of qualities that make it ideal for particular applications. While some cherries are luscious and sweet, others are sour and tart. Learn about the various varieties of cherries and how to use them in this article.

Overturned wicker basket outdoor with big sweet cherries

People have liked cherries for millennia. They have been grown for many centuries and are thought to have originated in Asia.

Cherries are now grown all over the world and used in a variety of ways.

There is a cherry variety that is ideal for you, whether you like them fresh, dried, or cooked.

Key Takeaways

  • There are many different types of cherries, each with its own unique flavor and characteristics.
  • Sweet cherries are perfect for eating fresh or used in desserts, while sour cherries are great for making pies and other baked goods.
  • Wild cherries are a lesser-known variety that can be used in a variety of ways, from making jam to flavoring liqueurs.

Origins of Cherries

The history of cherries is lengthy and fascinating, dating back thousands of years.

The boxes are freshly picked red cherries.

Cherries are thought to have originated in what is now Turkey, and evidence from antiquity indicates that people were eating them as early as 300 BCE.

Cherries became a staple food in numerous civilizations after being introduced to Europe and Asia over time.

Cherries, for instance, were frequently consumed at festivals honoring the goddess Venus in ancient Rome where they were seen as a symbol of fertility.

As cherries gained popularity, individuals started to grow many cherry types. Today, cherries come in hundreds of varieties, each with a distinctive flavor and texture.

The sweet cherry, which is grown all over the world, including in the United States, Europe, and Asia, is one of the most well-liked varieties of cherries.

Sweet cherries can be used in pies, jams, sauces, and other dishes in addition to being traditionally consumed fresh.

The sour cherry is another common variety of cherry that is frequently used in baking and cuisine.

The acidic, tangy flavor of sour cherries makes them ideal for use in pies, tarts, and other desserts. They are smaller than sweet cherries.

In general, cherries are a tasty and adaptable fruit with a lengthy history and a wide range of variants.

There are many ways to enjoy cherries, whether you favor sweet or sour varieties.

Sweet Cherries

Popular sweet cherries can be eaten straight from the tree or added to a variety of dishes.

Sweet cherry

They have a sweeter flavor and a deeper color than sour cherries, and they are often larger and harder.

Some of the most popular varieties of sweet cherry are listed below:

  • Bing Cherries: Bing cherries are the most well-known type of sweet cherry. They are large, deep-red, and have a crisp texture with a sweet flavor. They are available from mid-spring through mid-summer and are great for snacking or adding to baked goods.
  • Rainier Cherries: Rainier cherries are a type of sweet cherry that have a yellow or pinkish-red skin with a creamy yellow flesh. They are sweeter than Bing cherries and have a lower acidity level, making them perfect for eating fresh.
  • Stella Cherries: Stella cherries are a dark red sweet cherry with a slightly tart flavor. They are often used in baking and canning, but are also great for eating fresh.
  • Sweetheart Cherries: Sweetheart cherries are a large, heart-shaped cherry with a dark red skin and a sweet, juicy flesh. They are great for snacking or adding to salads.
  • Tulare Cherries: Tulare cherries are a type of sweet cherry that are similar in size and flavor to Bing cherries. They have a deep red skin and a sweet, juicy flesh that is perfect for snacking.

When choosing sweet cherries, aim for ones that are firm, plump, and have lustrous skin.

Cherries that are tender or have bruising or blemishes should be avoided. Sweet cherries last for up to a week and are best kept in the refrigerator.

They make a delightful addition to any meal and are a fantastic source of vitamins and antioxidants.

Sour Cherries

Popular sour cherry varieties are typically too tart to consume uncooked. They have softer flesh and are more globular in form than their sweet cousins.

handful of ripe cherries in his hands

They are frequently employed in baking and cooking.


The Montmorency cherry and the Morello cherry are the two most popular varieties of sour cherries.

Bright red in color, Montmorency cherries have a tart, acidic flavor. Morello cherries have a more sour flavor and a darker hue.

Culinary Uses

Popular baked products including pies, tarts, and cakes often use sour cherries as an ingredient. Additionally, they can be used to create sauces, jams, and jellies.

They also taste fantastic when added to savory meals, such as meat dishes or marinades, because to their tangy flavor.

Nutritional Benefits

Vitamin C, fiber, and antioxidants are all present in good amounts in tart cherries.

They have been associated with a number of health advantages, such as lowering inflammation, enhancing sleep, and promoting workout recovery.

To fully comprehend their possible health advantages, additional research is necessary.

All things considered, sour cherries are a tasty and adaptable fruit that can provide a distinctive acidity to a range of meals.

Wild Cherries

Prunus avium, sometimes referred to as wild cherries, is a cherry species that is indigenous to Europe.

Cherry on the branch grows, ripened red cherry

These cherries are also frequently seen in Asia and North America.

Wild cherries often have a stronger flavor and are smaller and darker than sweet cherries. In addition to being used to make cherry brandy, they are frequently utilized in baking and cooking.

Wild cherries provide therapeutic benefits in addition to their culinary usage.

For ages, people have utilized the bark of wild cherry trees as a home cure for colds and coughs. It has ingredients that can ease inflammation and calm the respiratory system.

Antioxidants, which can aid in defending the body against harm from free radicals, are also abundant in wild cherries.

Additionally, they contain a lot of vitamin C, which is vital for healthy skin and the immune system.

Choose wild cherries that have a strong, plump texture and a deep, rich color. Cherry that is soft or bruised should be avoided.

Overall, wild cherries are a tasty and healthy fruit that may be consumed in a number of different ways.

These tiny fruits will satisfy your palate and improve your health whether you bake a pie, make jam, or simply snack on fresh cherries.

Frequently Asked Questions

big Cherries hanging on a cherry tree branch.

What are the most common types of cherries?

Some of the most common types of cherries include:

1. Bing cherries: These are the most common type of dark sweet cherry you’ll find at the grocery store. They’re firm, juicy, and sweet, and make a delicious summer snack.

2. Rainier cherries: These are a type of sweet cherry with a yellow or pinkish-red skin and a creamy yellow flesh. They’re sweeter and less acidic than other types of cherries.

3. Montmorency cherries: These are a type of tart cherry that’s often used in baking and cooking. They have a bright red skin and a tangy flavor.

What’s the difference between sweet and tart cherries?

Sweet cherries, like Bing and Rainier cherries, are the type of cherries you’re most likely to eat fresh. They’re juicy and sweet, with a mild flavor.
Tart cherries, like Montmorency cherries, are more acidic and have a tangy flavor. They’re often used in baking and cooking, and are also commonly used to make cherry juice and supplements.

Are cherries good for you?

Yes! Cherries are packed with nutrients like vitamin C, potassium, and fiber. They’re also rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds, which can help reduce inflammation and protect against chronic diseases.

How should I store cherries?

Fresh cherries should be stored in the refrigerator and eaten within a few days of purchase. You can also freeze cherries for later use by removing the pits and placing them in a resealable plastic bag. Cherries can also be canned or dried for longer-term storage.



In conclusion, cherries are a delicious and adaptable fruit that are available in a wide range of variations.

There is a cherry out there for everyone, whether they love sweet or sour cherries.

Sweet cherries are excellent as a snack, as an addition to fruit bowls, or as a component of sweet dishes like pies and tarts.

Bing, Rainier, and Sweetheart are a few of the widely used sweet cherry kinds.

Tart cherries, commonly referred to as sour cherries, are utilized in baked dishes like cherry pie and cherry cobbler because of their tart flavor.

Montmorency, Morello, and Balaton are a few of the well-liked sour cherry kinds.

Cherries are not only sweet, but they are also nutrient-rich. They are a good source of potassium, fiber, and vitamin C.

Cherries also include antioxidants, which can lessen inflammation in the body and shield your cells from harm.

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Written by Brian Nagele

Brian has over 20 years experience in the restaurant and hospitality industry. As a former restaurant owner, he knows about running a food business and loves to eat and enjoy cocktails on a regular basis. He constantly travels to new cities tasting and reviewing the most popular spots.